Sunday, October 28, 2007
The time has come. The Rebels are now the laughing stock of the SEC. Dead last. THe embarssment of the conference. Every SEC team has the chance to make it to a bowl this season. Except Ole Miss. Ole Miss already has seven losses. The Rebels are on pace to finish with the worst record in school history. Previously the worst the Rebels have done is lose seven SEC games. The Rebels have the unique opportunity to lose eight.
And to make matters worse Mississippi State and Vanderbilt have all dramatically improved. Croom has pulled off a major upset every single year at state. This year he is a game away from bowling after pulling off his second big win over a ranked SEC foe.
To make matters worse Arizona State is 8-0 and ranked 4th in the country with first year head coach Dennis Erickson.
I'm imploring all Rebel fans to attend the Northwestern State game this next weekend. And wear a Sun Devil T-shirt. You can get one here for 14 dollars.
Its time to show Pete Boone what could have been. And what has happened under the gar fisherman's watch.
Friday, October 26, 2007
Is anybody ready for some toe jam football?
It is time for the Rebel nation to come together and take a stand. We are not going to accept the product the administration is forcing on us. We're a football school in the SEC. We demand a decent football team.
Auburn by way more than the 17.5 Vegas is giving them to beat the Rebs.
Mississippi State to cover Kentucky's 13.5
Florida International to cover Ark's 39 ( I don't think Ark can score that much on anyone but the Rebels)
South Carolina to upset and cover Tennessee's 7
Miami of Ohio to upset and cover Vandy's 13.5 (Vandy always throws one big clunker a year after a big win. I think this is it.)
Florida by more than 9 over UGA.
Much to the delight of our Canadian friend the Rebels travel to the Plains this weekend. So his war eagles have a good shot at a victory. Which they need considering they've already lost 3 games this year. (And still have ole Saban coming up.)
After a rocky start the offense is finally play decent ball as well. Early in the season the offensive line was underperforming and with Brad Lester missing half the season because of academic issues Auburn had little ground game. This forced their quarterback Brandon Cox to try to win games singlehandedly and subsequently have a lot of turn over problems.
Since mid season the War Eagles have started playing three true freshman on the offensive line extensively with two starting at right guard and right tackle. Right Guard is Mississippi's own Chaz Ramsey. Warning to Peria Jerry: Chaz likes to block low. I think he was taught by Cobra Kai. Since these freshman have come in and Lester's come back the running game has taken off.
Upon reading this Dustin Mouzon should avoid all Canadians until Sunday.
Tony Fein made some tackles. 13 to be exact. He's finally playing decent even though he and Chris Strong were plugged in immediately to start the season because they came with recruiting hype. Of course they struggled to learn the system and Brandon Thomas outplayed them just because he knew the system. However he didn't make enough tackles because the Rebels gave up 44 points easily.
No one gets a game ball. You give up 44 points no one is deserving.
But lets get on to something new. Seth Played his first really bad game. Through 4 interceptions. Not all were entirely his fault as the receivers didn't help him. On one they fell down on the other the ball was stripped away. The other two Seth just tried to throw it farther than he's got the arm strength for into good coverage. The other teams are learning how to scheme him a bit as he has a limited game.
The problem with Seth and why he got so much praise from me early on was that he appeared to know his limitations. He wouldn't try to force the ball when he didn't have the arm to get it in a tight spot. He wouldn't try to do too much which would lead to turnovers.
Well know he's pressing too much and trying to singlehandedly win games. And the result 4 picks.
But enough has been said about that. Lets look at a forgotten subject. Last year during recruiting season the gar fisherman cut bait on some of his biggest prospects because he was afraid they wouldn't get qualified. Or so the story went. Either they looked else where or Eddie turned them loose. A lot of them went on to sign with some big time programs.
Dion Gales - Troy State GOT IN SCHOOL
Allen Bell - Iowa State GOT IN SCHOOL
Alex Williams - Oklahoma GOT IN SCHOOL
Jeramie Griffith - Alabama GOT IN SCHOOL
Larry Dennis - University of Nevada At Las Vegas Did not qualify
Darnell Williams - University of Central Florida Did not qualify
Stanley Porter - Arkansas State GOT IN SCHOOL
Paul Henry - Arkansas State Did not qualify
So Oklahoma who's ranked can take more of a chance on a four star offensive lineman than the Rebels can? Because we don't need more offensive line man or anything. And I can't wait to see Griffith run all over us in a Bama uniform.
And apparently the coaches were petrified of a non-qualifer yet managed to sign 3 of them. (David Rue, A.J. Jackson, and Roderick Davis.) Shows they are not the best at making this prediction.
Friday, October 19, 2007
Today's the day Rebels. Seize it. Oh its been a long time since I felt that way. If you don't well maybe today's not the day. And its time to move on.
Arkansas +5 over the Rebels.
(Haven't seen anything to make me think they can tackle Darren/Felix)
State to cover the -24 West Virgina's givin'
South Carolina +13 over Vandy
Alabama pickem over UT
Florida +7 over UK
And just to piss of our Canadian Auburn homer:
LSU +10 over the Auburn War Eagles
I'm keeping it brief this week because its overly obvious. The Hogs have two of the best running backs in the country between Darren McPhadden and Felix Jones. Both ripped the Rebels last year. If they do it again it will be ugly. If the Rebels stop them its a game. Force them to pass the ball and they struggle as Casey Dick is not one of the better passers in the SEC. But then he's looked pretty good against the Rebels the last two years. But Marcus Monk's not 100% so the passing game should struggle. Arkansas's defense is capable of giving up big yards but three week Rebel Defensive Coordinator Reggie Herring has them playing pretty well the last few weeks.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
So without further ado your weekly recap!
The other big highlight was Greg Hardy's performance. A lot of it came from scheme as the coaches new the right side was a little weaker missing a starter. Additionally they would over load the right side so that the line would have trouble figuring out who to block so that often a running back was left trying to block Hardy which wasn't going to work. So credit has to go to the coaching staff for recognizing that weak point and maximizing it in the blitz package. Also credit has to go to Hardy who had just an amazingly dominate afternoon and was in the Alabama backfield all day. And easily takes the game ball.
The special teams and overall defensive tackling is still atrocious. I don't want to harp so I'll leave it at that.
The call. for two reasons. One watching it live I thought they had it right because Hodge clearly stepped out of bounds and it looked like on his own accord because the defensive player had good position. Secondly it looked like to me that the ball hit Hodge first, fell into the defensive players hands who caught it briefly before Hodge ripped it away. But that is not how it was called on the field. And after watching the replays I don't know how "irrefutable" it could be because with multiple replays you couldn't definitively tell who touched the ball. So its hard for the refs to reverse that one.
On the other hand all the complaining about officiating is what losers do. Of course the Rebels have lost a lot since Eddie's been the head coach. But blaming the officials is crap. Make the plays to win the game and don't blame it on the officials later. The Rebels had their chances to win the game but didn't take them. Alabama also missed their chances to put the game away. Make the plays and it won't matter. And complaining will get you no where but beat the next week when you don't focus on the upcoming game but instead waste the week looking back.
Friday, October 12, 2007
Bama brings a solid defense and a great running game. Bama has three solid running backs that all carry the ball well and can rotate in an out. Two are former Mississippi Highschool Players of the Year in Terry Grant and Jimmy Johns. For most of the season it has flipped back and forth between Terry Grant and Glen Coffey as to who gets the majority of the carries. Grant is the speediest of the backs. It doesn't really matter whose running the ball since the offensive line is one of the better ones in the conference. The line is headlined by Andre Smith who will easily be a first team lineman at the end of the year. Expect Bama to get some yards on the ground.
Bama also has some talented receivers in DJ Hall, Matt Caddell, Keith Brown, and Mississippi's own Mike McCoy. In fact Alabama's got six Mississippians on the roster five of which were former Dandy Dozen players. (Terry Grant, Justin Woodall, Jimmy Johns, Milton Talbert, and Jeramie Griffith)
Bama's weakness is defensive depth. They seem to get worn down late in the game and allow teams to move the ball on them late. If the Rebels can keep it close for 3 quarters than they have a chance to make a run at the end. Unfortunately that is also one of the Rebels biggest weaknesses and they equally struggle to score points in the fourth quarter. John Parker Wilson is also capable of having a very bad day throwing the ball and can be forced into turnovers.
The second touchdown was another pass from Seth but to Shay Hodge. Hodge looked like he did not have possession of the ball while crossing the goal line but the officials reviewed the call and determined that he indeed scored. Shay is becoming the Rebels most reliable receiver and one with the most consistent hands. What was one of the biggest weaknesses to start the season is becoming a weapon as Marshay Green, Burnell Mike Wallace, Shay Hodge, and Dexter McCluster together form a formidable foursome. Micheal Hicks has also had some big plays as the Rebels "Big" receiver but unfortunately has been a little banged up the last couple of games.
The Rebels were outgained in total yardage by the Techsters 301 to 232 and were given help from Tech's 117 penalty yards and turnovers. But the defense did a good job nonetheless of stopping Tech once they got to the Redzone. Tech had multiple attempts to score in the game an either missed field goals turned the ball over, failed to convert on fourth down or in the last instance had the Rebels block their field goal attempt and return it for a score.
Whenever a player gets 15 total tackles in a game he's got to get the gameball so this week it goes to Ashlee Palmer.
Seth had his first bad day as the Rebels starting quarterback. While he through 2 touchdowns he also had three picks. A lot of the day the only offense it looked like the Rebels had was just throwing it deep and hoping Burnell got a pass interference call since the Tech defenders could not keep up with him. Seth also only managed 162 yards passing on the day against a defense that has been burned through the air all season.
The offense as a whole underperformed as well. The Predator never got going and at half Ole Miss had 6 yards rushing. He finished the day with 54 yards rushing and the Rebels only mustered 65 total rushing yards and 232 total yards.
The number one recruit for next year might be a kickoff specialist.
Friday, October 5, 2007
So basically Patrick did what he did without learning any technique while at Ole Miss. Could that explain some of current problems at linebacker? If a Butkus award winner is surviving on athletic ability alone would if possibly help the others to have the proper technique taught? Goes to show that the Rebels have the players they are just not put in the position to make plays.
Tech's a better team than there 1-3 record indicates. Their not great but they are not just terrible. There one win was over Central Arkansas. Two of there three losses were to undefeated ranked teams #3 Cal and a one point over time loss to #16 Hawaii. The other loss was a 17-6 loss over typically tough 2-2 Fresno State team whose lost close to Oregon and Texas A&M. They're coached by Vince Dooley's son Derek.
Tech's best offensive performer is quarterback Zac Champion. He's thrown for 586 yards and five touchdowns. He's done a good job managing the turnovers and has only given up 2 interceptions. Tech has also got three good defensive lineman in Ben McGilton, Chris Dugh, and John Muse. They do a good job of stopping the run. Well not really. They give up over a 150 yards rushing a game. But compared to the passing offense it looks good. ( #88 Rushing Defense # 107 Passing Defense)
La'Tech gives up nearly twice as many yards through the air as they do on the ground. Considering the way Seth's playing that could work in our favor. Tech's defense has given up over 40 points twice this year. Granted both were to ranked teams with high powered offenses that feature first round NFL talent at either receiver or quarterback. But it shows Tech's capable of giving up a lot of points. So if the Rebel Offense can outscore Tech they can come out with a big victory on homecoming.
Additionally Tech's offensive line has struggled. Just last week Fresno State got to Champion and sacked him six times in the second half. So look for the Rebels to really try to turn the pressure up this week.
Monday, October 1, 2007
Scoring offense: 12 @ 21.2 pts/gm
Scoring Defense: 11 @ 33 pts/gm (just above UT)
Pass Offense: 4 @ 250 yds/gm
Pass Defense: 12 @ 255.6 yds/gm
Turnover Margin: 11 @ -3
Rushing Offense: 12 @ 119 yds/gm
Rushing Defense 12 @ 219.8 yds/gm
Total Offense: 8 @ 369.4 yds per game
Total Defense: 12 @ 475.5 yds/gm
Now just think were the Rebels would be without the great play by Seth this year. The Rebels are dead last in passing defense, rushing defense, and total defense and offensively rushing offense. Last year with Schaeffer at the helm the Rebels were one of the worst passing offenses in the Country. Its now the only category were the Rebels are not in the double digits.
But as good as Seth's day was, (228 yards 1 TD) he also threw a costly interception and is at least half to blame for the quarterback center exchange fumble. So the game ball goes to the offensive line. Aside from a few costly penalties the line had a pretty solid day. They lead a 158 yard rushing day and most importantly gave up zero sacks.
Failure to make adjustments. Under Eddie the Rebels have developed a trend of playing well in the first half when they've had all week to come up with a game plan. Then at the half or subsequently there after the other team does this crazy thing called "make adjustments" and pick up our blitz or switch to a hard count or switch coverage's or something. Our staff then freaks out because they don't know what to do. It doesn't fit the game plan we made before hand and we play back and they destroy us. And we absolutely fall apart late in the game. It happened in fourth quarter against Georgia, start of the second half against Florida, with five minutes to go in the first half against Missouri, the second half against Vandy, and the second half against Memphis. Luckily against Memphis they were in just a little too big of a hole or we'd be 0-5.
I know our scheme is good,. I like our scheme. I'm involved in it. I know exactly what we're doing. We just have to do it right and when we get there, we have to make plays. If the guys can't make the plays, then we've got to recruit some guys that can make them." He even referred to guys as, "a walk-on and a couple of third-team linebackers."
At the Monday press conference he was given the chance to recant any of that. Instead he decided to name players by name. "They ran us over a couple of times. We look at Kendrick Lewis,Kendrick was a wide receiver last year, and this is more of a physical type league.He isn’t the only one. I’m just using him as an example. Ashlee Palmer came in, who is a good linebacker for us. He came in as a wide receiver/defensive back. He is playing linebacker, so it’s taking those guys a while to adjust to all the tackling and the physical game."
Far be it that Ashlee Palmer is actually the best linebacker on the team and forth in the SEC in tackles. Of course Eddie's got a raise last year because of his recruiting prowess. But then he just said we don't have enough guys who can make plays? He's had the opportunity to dole out 75 plus scholarships in his tenure? That's all but ten you're allowed? So who's fault is it that we don't have the players he wants? Oh wait that's right the "I'm In" crowd will tell you that its all still Cut's fault because of those ten scholarships and leaving the cupbard bare despite that Eddie's had three years to restock it.
He also talked about how he felt , "we need bigger stronger guys." I don't think that's necessarily the problem Eddie. Chris Herring Strong weighs in the 270's and I doubt that you'll find many linebackers bigger than he is. He managed one tackle against Georgia and that's your first team starting middle linebacker. Wasn't he your hand picked successor for Patrick Willis. Now I think Strong's a great athlete and will be a good player. I just don't think its at linebacker at least not without dropping 30 more pounds.
But that's not the biggest problem. Its calling out your players in the press. Eddie needs to take a lesson from Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy. Gundy got lampooned for this but you don't tell me his players respect him for it? For not taking credit after a big victory but instead telling reporters to criticize him not his players. Eddie instead says his system that gave up 300 plus rushing yards is perfect; its that he doesn't have good players. I'm sure that sat well in the locker room.